Happy birthday, Hunter! Joe Biden makes surprise pit-stop in California to join scandal-hit son, 54, for lunch at celebrity favorite The Ivy
President Joe Biden and First Lady Jill Biden joined son Hunter at The Ivy restaurant in Beverly Hills on Sunday to celebrate their son’s 54th birthday.
The first couple were in town for campaign events and made the unscheduled stop at the popular celebrity brunch spot. On Saturday, which was the late Beau Biden’s birthday, Joe and Jill Biden visited his grave in Wilmington, Del., before leaving for the West Coast.
The president sparked chaos in Los Angeles on Saturday when his motorcade traffic delayed the start of a college basketball game and protesters flooded the streets where he was staying.
Biden headed straight to George Lucas’ Bel Air home upon his arrival in the city of Angeles, where entertainment industry leaders were in town for the Grammys.
But his motorcade, which consists of about two dozen vehicles and closes the streets to all traffic so the president can be moved quickly, caused major delays and was greeted by students protesting the war in the Middle East.
Biden had no public events on his schedule for his Los Angeles trip. The White House said he was participating in a “campaign event” on Saturday night.
Joe and Jill Biden arrived in Los Angeles on Saturday
Joe and Jill Biden visited son Beau’s grave in Wilmington, Del., on Saturday
The men’s basketball game between UCLA and the University of Oregon at Pauley Pavilion was delayed about 25 minutes after motorcade traffic delayed the arrival of the visiting Oregon team, according to ESPN.
The Oregon team stayed at the same West Beverly Hills hotel where President Biden stayed. The hotel is just a few blocks from the UCLA campus and is heavily secured due to the presidential visit.
The game finally started and UCLA won 71-63.
In addition, the hotel was rammed by protesters on Saturday night. Both President Joe Biden and First Lady Jill Biden stayed there. While Biden was at George Lucas’ house, Jill Biden spoke at a gala at Paramount Studios in Hollywood in support of a nonprofit that asks retailers to give 15% of their shelf space to black-owned brands.
Outside the Bidens’ hotel, cars honked and chants were heard as people voiced their objections to Israel’s attack on Gaza.
And about 75 protesters were outside the hotel.
The road leading to the hotel was blocked by the police. LAPD officers and Secret Service were on the scene, some with riot gear and rubber bullets.
Various student organizations participated in the protests.
President Biden exits Marine One to board his motorcade in Santa Monica
The University of Oregon men’s basketball team was staying at the same hotel with President Joe Biden and motorcade traffic caused kickoff to be delayed by 30 minutes
Biden has been chased by protesters at his campaign stops, including some during his last visit to Los Angeles in December (above)
Biden has been mobbed by protesters at his events in recent months as calls for a Middle East ceasefire grow louder. When he was last in Los Angeles in December, he was also chased by protesters.
At recent campaign events, protesters have had confrontations with the police.
Students for Justice in Palestine at UCLA and UC Divest at UCLA shared a live video on Instagram Saturday afternoon, titled “GENOCIDE JOE,” depicting cars driving around Westwood while passengers wave Palestinian flags inside, according to the Daily Bruin.
At Biden’s campaign event in Michigan on Thursday, a standoff between protesters and police lasted about 30 minutes. Dozens of protesters stood within inches of local law enforcement. Squads of riot police wearing helmets and wielding batons were brought in for reinforcements.
Protesters dubbed the president ‘Genocide Joe’ and shouted slogans that read ‘Biden, Biden, you’re a liar, we demand a truce,’ and ‘Biden, Biden, you can’t hide, we’re charging you with genocide.’
At a campaign rally last month in Virginia, more than a dozen protesters were escorted out after repeatedly interrupting the president.
US troops have been targeted in the Middle East in recent weeks.
The US retaliated against the attacks, especially after three US soldiers were killed in a drone strike in Jordan last weekend.
President Joe Biden and First Lady Jill Biden are greeted by (from left) Senator Alex Padilla, his son Diego Cruz Padilla and Rep. Maxine Waters after they arrived in Los Angeles
President Biden meets entertainment leaders at the Bel Air home of George Lucas and Mellody Hobson (see above in 2016)
The United States and Britain launched strikes against 36 Houthi targets in Yemen, a day after the US military struck Tehran-backed groups in Iraq and Syria in retaliation for a deadly attack.
“We intend to take additional strikes and additional steps to continue to send a clear message that the United States will respond when our forces are attacked, when our people are killed,” White House national security adviser Jake Sullivan told NBC’s Meet the Press on Sunday.
The strikes are the latest blows in a conflict that has spread to the Middle East since Oct. 7, when the Iran-backed Palestinian militant group Hamas stormed Israel from the Gaza Strip, sparking war.
The US has carried out more than a dozen strikes against Houthi targets in recent weeks.
Major shipping lines have largely abandoned the Red Sea shipping lanes for longer routes around Africa. This raised costs, raising concerns about global inflation, while denying Egypt important foreign revenue from the use of the Suez Canal.
The US attacks in Iraq were the deadliest in years.
Meanwhile, Biden heads to Las Vegas on Sunday afternoon for political events. Biden’s stop comes as Nevada wraps up early voting for the presidential preference primary. Election day for the primary is Tuesday, February 6.
He will talk to voters in the city’s historic west side about what’s at stake in the election, his campaign said.